Morenci city council 2012.02.01

Written by David Green.

By DAVID GREEN

Morenci city council members voted Jan. 23 to terminate the city’s lease on the EMS building at the corner of W. Coomer Street and Sims Highway, but they held off on accepting the former hospital land.

ProMedica Health System is turning over ownership of the EMS building to the city. The property includes the former Morenci Area Hospital clinic building along with the newer ambulance garage and training room.

Morenci police chief Larry Weeks, who serves as the EMS coordinator, told council that repairs and maintenance work is needed at the facility and noted that some of the work could be quite expensive.

Council tabled a decision to accept the seven-acre property where the former hospital was located. That issue will be discussed at the next meeting.

Building inspector Kevin Arquette found that the demolition site still has some holes to fill in and some areas to be leveled. Some debris also remains.

Council is asking ProMedica to address those concerns before the city assumes ownership, said city administrator/clerk Renée Schroeder.

Weeks asked if the hospital land will be parceled and he stated the need to have a clear delineation of the property lines regarding the EMS facility.

Mayor Keith Pennington said he doesn’t expect that the land would be divided into parcels unless someone expresses an interest in buying the land from the city.

WINDOWS—Councilor Jeff Bell pointed out state requirements governing window replacement. The regulations address required energy efficiency standards.

LIBRARY—Susan Bach was hired as a new library assistant to replace Janell Thomas. Bach is currently working toward a master’s degree in library science and has experience as a literacy tutor and an adult education teacher.

LAGOONS—Council approved spending $1,800 for testing equipment to be used at the three sewage lagoons to meet state requirements for testing the levels of pH and dissolved oxygen.

MOWER—Council approved repairs to the cemetery lawn mower, expected to cost $1,400. A new mower would cost about $10,000.

FIREWORKS—Councilor Tracy Schell reported that further discussion is needed regarding fireworks regulations now that the state government allows the sale of fireworks.

Chief Weeks said that council should consider whether it wants large quantities of fireworks to be stored for sale in the downtown or in residences.

The city’s existing ordinance forbids the sale and use of fireworks.

AMBULANCE—Weeks expects delivery of the new ambulance in mid-February. The bulk of the cost was paid through a federal grant.

ROAD REPAIR—Council discussed a proposal to work with the county in rebuilding the city’s portion of Weston Road, from the city limits to Main Street.

The county is slated to work on Weston Road, Pennington said, and Morenci’s portion could be upgraded to a Class A road. The city’s portion is deteriorating.

Schell agreed that it’s a very worthwhile project, but payment for the work needs to be made in the next fiscal year.

PULBIC SAFETY—Schroeder noted that a meeting is scheduled in Adrian Thursday evening to discuss a proposed county-wide millage for public safety.

  • Front.cross
    HUDSON RUNNER Jacob Morgan looks toward the top of the hill with dismay during the tough finish at Harrison Lake State Park. Fayette runner Jacob Garrow focuses on the summit, also, during the Eagle Invitational cross country run Saturday morning. Continuing rain and drizzle made the course even more challenging. Results of the race are in this week’s Observer.
  • Front.bear
    HOLDEN HUTCHISON gives a hug to a black bear cub—the product of a taxidermist’s skills—at the Michigan DNR’s Great Youth Jamboree. The event on Sunday marked the fourth year of the Jamboree. Additional photos are on page 12.
  • Front.crossing
    Crossing over—Jim Heiney was given a U.S. flag to carry by George Vereecke (behind Jim in the hat), turning him into the leader of the parade. Bridge Walk participants cross over Bean Creek while, in the background, members of the Morenci Legion Riders cross the main traffic bridge on East Street South. Additional photos appear on the back page of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.hose Testing
    HOSE safety—The FireCatt hose testing company from Troy put Morenci Fire Department hose to the test Monday morning when Mill Street was closed to traffic. The company also checks nozzles and ladders for wear in an effort to keep fire fighters safe while on calls.
  • Front.starting
    BIKE-A-THON—Children in Morenci’s Summer Recreation Program brought their bikes last Tuesday to participate in a bike-a-thon. Riders await the start of the event at the elementary school before being led on a course through town by organizer Leonie Leahy.
  • Front.train
    WRECKAGE—Morenci Fire Department member Taylor Schisler walks past the smoking wreckage of a semi-truck tractor on the north side of the Norfolk and Southern Railroad tracks on Ranger Highway. The truck trailer was on the south side of the tracks

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